Three ways to improve your efficiency as a trade marketeer or category manager

Are you also busy number crunching in Excel and trying to create the most convincing trade presentations in Powerpoint? Do some things take you an annoying lot of time? Wouldn’t it be great to be a lot faster in these tools?

Let me give you three tips.

  • Improve your Excel skills by following (a course of) Leila Gharani

Leila Gharani is a former finance professional with almost 2 million followers on Youtube. You can find an Excel-tip from her here almost weekly. These videos are packed with advanced knowledge. Next to this channel, Leila has also made a number of online courses, that are ridiculously low priced for what she teaches you. Everything is explained very clearly, and the modules are built up really well. Even when you think you are quite good at Excel, I would recommend to start with Excel Essentials for the Real World. Pretty soon you will find out shortcuts or options in Excel you didn’t know yet, which can make you maybe five times as fast (at least, that was my experience). Do you want to work even smarter and faster than that? Invest time in learning PowerQuery, PowerPivot en DAX. Each video in the course takes about ten minutes, so I would suggest to start every day with one new lesson. Then you can immediately apply what you have learned in your job.

  • Make better (looking) presentations faster with Grunt or Think-Cell

Do you also think these standard PPT-charts or copied Excel-charts are really ugly? And are you also irritated about some of the alignment options in the charts? Do you get mad when an account manager asks you to add another column to that carefully aligned table/slide (which will take you hours to adapt)? All of these issues will be gone when you use the add-ins Grunt or Think-Cell. It requires an investment (Think-Cell can do more with charts, but is also more expensive), but it will save you loads of time and annoyance

  • Add photos and icons fast and legally

Often you are looking for illustrations to make your presentation visually more attractive. You know, you cannot just download them from Google Images, but where do you go? Unsplash offers fantastic pictures for free, when you mention the photographer in your document. For all kinds of icons, I have a subscription to the Noun-project. You can also use this for free, but I can use all icones without reference. They now also have an add-in for Powerpoint. So I never have to go back and forth to my browser to search for icons. It also facilitates easier changing the colour of the icon.

Do you have more tips for me or your category management colleagues? Please let me know.